8 Myths About Vegan Children That Need Debunking
1. Vegan children won’t grow properly
Raise Vegan previously talked about the new study which exposed that children who don’t drink cow’s milk suffer from stunted growth. However, the research used vague terms, only saying that children who didn’t consume dairy milk “weighed less” than their counterparts. Currently, there is a more serious problem of obesity in children, so weight is be a relative measure in this case. Studies like this have the potential to increase bias and sway people to criticize parents who raise their children vegan.
2. The children were forced into it
A lot of parents receive backlash for raising their children vegan, and some people even think that it’s a huge parenting mistake. Vegan or not, any parent will work hard to make sure that their kids receive proper nutrition. Any type of diet needs proper planning and implementation, and there have been no studies that prove eating meals with meat and dairy is in fact healthier or more substantial.
On the other hand, there are many sources that point to the benefits of eating fruits and vegetables. Health IQ discussed the correlation between eating plenty of fruits and vegetables and happiness. This is vital for the well being of any child, and says more about why they should continue consuming plant-based food.
3. Veganism for children is unfair
Perhaps the most fallacious of all, some people generally tend to think that veganism is unsafe altogether. Parents allegedly rob their children of the choice to eat meat; however, the argument can easily be countered by the lack of choice kids would have about wanting to eat meat. Any child can become malnourished if the parents are negligent of his or her needs, something that applies not only to those who choose to raise their children vegan.
4. Vegan diets don’t have a source of calcium
There are people who actually think that calcium can only be found in dairy products, but this is entirely false. Calcium is indeed important to support the bones of a growing child, and there are many vegan food options that can provide the daily nutritional requirement. Different sources of calcium were also listed in another post here on Raise Vegan, and they include collard greens, kale, and soybeans. Children who are lactose-intolerant look to the same sources for calcium, so it is not solely for people with a vegan diet either.
5. Vegan children won’t get sufficient protein
Protein is another major nutrient that is most often acquired through eating meat. But just like calcium, there are plenty of dishes that serve the recommended protein intake growing kids should consume. Food and Nutrition shares that the key to getting enough protein when adhering to a vegan diet is to eat an assortment of whole plant foods. Examples of these are beans, nuts, and grains.
6. Vegan children will not maintain the lifestyle
Another one of the myths about vegan children is that they don’t enjoy vegan meals so much, and they’ll end up eating meat when they grow up. A lot of vegan meals are in fact tasty and it’s not all about eating salad. The variety will give vegan children plenty of options to sustain this lifestyle when they grow up. Vegan Society iterates the fact that most meat-based meals have a vegan counterpart, including vegan versions of cheese and meat.
7. Vegan children will be physically weak
Keeping an active lifestyle will not be impossible just because of having a vegan diet. The Conversation presents research that proves being a vegan is not a hindrance on physical strength and development. It all comes down to a well-balanced vegan diet. Tennis superstar Venus Williams and ultra-marathon runner Scott Jurek are just some of the most successful vegan athletes who debunk this myth like a pro.
8. Vegan children will be grow up to be condescending
This is one of those myths about vegan children that is one of the more personal attacks against vegans. A lot of flak has been given to the vegan community in general for being “preachy”, but there are many vegans who just carry on with the diet without expectations from other people. A child’s diet is not directly related to how he or she will grow up to be. This bias is offensive as it is unproven, and in no way even relates to the diet.
Overall, many studies have proven that a veganism is safe for all ages. Children who are exposed to this kind of diet will grow up to be happy, healthy, and normal, just like every other kid. As long as parents are also actively watching over their daily nutritional intake, raising a child vegan should go well without a hitch.
Have you heard any other myths about vegan children that need debunking? Let us know in the comments below!
Tags: parenting advice, parenting support, raise vegan, vegan children, vegan myths